outlet tester from radio shack. what is the use? how important?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by VincentY, Jan 6, 2003.

  1. VincentY

    VincentY Stunt Coordinator

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    i've been told by many that i should get one of those inexpensive outlet testers from radio shack, around $10-$15, and test all my outlets for proper wiring around my apartment (i live in Manhattan in an apartment).

    does anyone know what the purposes are? all the outlets seem to work. what does incorrect wiring mean and what are the ill effects and what are the consequences?

    many thanks!
     
  2. ThomasL

    ThomasL Supporting Actor

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    It'll tell you if you have proper ground or if neutral and ground are reversed or if hot and neutral are reversed. The outlet can still work in some cases even if the wiring is incorrect. I had an outlet with hot and neutral reversed that's worked fine for the past 5 years. I didn't know it was wired wrong until I plugged in a surge protector that told me I had no ground. I got a tester and it told me what was really wrong and I fixed it. If you have anything wrong, it's best to call an electrician (or have your landlord get an electrician since you're in an apt) unless you have an idea what you're doing and know what breaker to trip in order to turn power off to the circuit. Thos little testers are also a handy way to determine what is on what circuit. Trip a circuit and then run around plugging it in to see which outlets have gone dead.

    If you live in an apt and it's older then the most important thing to determine is if you have grounded outlets. If they only have 2 plugs, they they're not and short of running new wire, there's not much you can do.

    cheers,


    --tom
     
  3. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

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    it's a good thing to check. it's your way of giving your outlets, all of them, a clean bill of health. usually cheaper than the deductible on your health or prescription plan.
     

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